So what happened after I posted this message:
I finished my journey just before Christmas by cooking soup for the frozen activists at the COP15 meeting. The food we served at the meeting in Denmark was a result of an association that we started early spring this year called Mykorrhiza. An open association for people interested in growing their own food and making green actions together such as Guerilla gardening. According to our calculations we served about 1000 meals a day, not only free and organic, it was steaming hot! The food was highly appreciated by people from all over the world attending at the forums, demonstrating etc. Our guests actually donated a lot of money that Mykorrhiza can now use for future actions.
We also handed out illegal seeds and informed about the companies that takes patent of seeds. People not knowing about it before got very angry and sometimes sad when they heard about it, although they were happy when they got some bags of seeds to grow in their own garden. I was personally very happy when I got the opportunity to listen to Vandana Shiva at the ClimaForum about her projects in India. Unfortunately for me there were too many journalists around her so I couldn’t get close enough to ask for her autograph. A true hero in my eyes and I would love to visit her farm one day.
Early September we were 16 friends from Mykorrhiza that took the train from Holma forrestgarden were the association is centered to south of France to attend at the Http://ReclaimTheFields.org -meeting in Carcassonne. An exciting meeting with interpreters and people from all over Europe. Everybody was there to listen and discuss how to be able to reclaim land and to grow organic food on a small scale in todays society where it’s difficult to compete with big industrial farms. You can read more about it on the website for Reclaim The Fields which is now the European branch from the global farmers organization called La via Campesina.
After the meeting I continued to the annual meeting for WWOOF Independent on the outskirts of London we’re the founder of WWOOF Sue Coppard also attended as well as many hosts and wwoofers. A cheerful meeting with food from the community called Old Hall that hosted the meeting. After the meeting I continued my journey to the French Pyrenees where I was wwoofing in St Giron for four weeks. Every Saturday all the mountainfarmers went down to the local market to sell their produce and have a chat with the neighbors from the other side of the valley, very fruitful tradition. In St Giron there are over 30 WWOOF hosts within one hour’s distance, which makes it quite easy to meet a lot of wwoofers together with their hosts on the market. One of the hosts that I visited is mentioned in the latest issue of the WWINDY news.
When the frost started to pinch the tomatoes even on the south side of the mountain I headed off to Portugal where I ended up on a German punk farm with donkeys goats and a heck of a lot of weeds to pick from the garden. After clayhouse building and wonderful walks to the ocean I continued to a terrace farm outside Aljezur and planted pomegranate, corkoaks and strawberry trees. Not the strawberries that I’m used to in Sweden but a berry used to make liquor distillated traditionally. WWOOF Portugal that is being coordinated by a guy called Rodrigo Rocha has started a tree nursery project were there is a tree planted for every wwoof member to symbolically compensate the wwoofers that chooses to fly. An initiative that originally was started by Allan and Bridget coordinators for WWOOF Italy. In Sweden there are so much planted forest already so it doesn’t feel as urgent as in the sandy and dry parts of south Portugal. Instead I believe in protecting the parts of old untouched forests that is becoming more and more rare in Sweden. Ideas are highly appreciated!
On the fourth and last farm in Portugal me and Rodrigo built a greenhouse and I got the opportunity to try his Kite surf, not far from the farm. For those, not familiar with Algarve I need to say that it can be very windy this time of year and to surf with a parachute is like controlling a Harley Davidson for a five year old kid. Nature is fantastic.
At the moment I’m wwoofing in Norway close to Oslo on a dairyfarm that also act as an educational farm for students. In eighth grade, the students come to the farm during the summertime. To work for one week in the garden, seeding and preparing the soil, manure and compost etc. Ninth grade comes in the autumn and is focusing on the harvest, preserving and the slaughter. This week I have been working together with a class ten where we have worked with the animals and prepared a feast for the student’s grandparents. A really nice way to end a good job on the farm. The students have been working in groups, received two tasks each day were some students have been indoors cooking food and cakes and some feeding the animals other preparing the entertainment and some were doing a presentation about colonial food and food sovereignty to present to the guests. At the table yesterday there was a guest of honor that was treated with extra attention and care. The feast was very successful and I think the students grew a few centimeters during this week even if they were frustrated and stressed some times. This morning when we were discussing the past week we were interrupted with a cow giving birth, we had to pull it out but everything went alright, a nice little bull is now resting beside his mother down in the barn. I like to think of the grandparents talking about the feast with their families. There are so many negative things happening in the world but this I’m sure was positive.
Tomorrow we will have some other guests here and there will be a group discussion and a lecture about CSA – Community Supported Agriculture.
I look forward to hear about your WWOOF Stories, good or bad!
Hello good kind gentle folks!
I'm going on a WWOOF tour. I will also visit a convent called Reclaim the fields a branch from Via Campesina the convent takes place in the south of France. It would be nice to see you there!.. Http://reclaimthefields.org
The camp will start on the 30th of September in the late afternoon and finish on Sunday the 4th of October in the evening.
Where is it?
The camp will take place in the farm of Cravirola, also called Le Maquis, on a place called «Bois-Bas », near the village of Minerve. It's in Herault department, between Toulouse and Montpellier in the South of France. Le Maquis is a collective farm runned by dedicated people. More info on:
Who can participate?
We aim at gathering young peasants, landless peasants and people who wish to start in agriculture and/or who want to recover food sovereignty.
How can you participate?
You can organize a workshop at the camp on topics related to access to farming, food sovereignty and/or agroecology. Please fill up the form attached below and send it to us before the 15th of September so that we can include it in the program.
You can let people around you know about the camp. There are printable posters on Reclaim the Fields website.
You can organize car-sharing from your country to come to the camp.
You can come earlier to take part to the preparation (from the 27th of September).
You can come and take part to the camp.
Do you have to pay?
The participation to the camp is 5 euros. We ask for a participation for the meals.
What you need to bring
Your tent, sleeping bag and camping mattress
A plate, glass, fork, knife and spoon
Rain clothes, warm clothes
Your sense of responsability and participation
your enthousiasm and determination that together we can change the world
A lot of friends!
What you really don't need to bring
Junk food from supermarkets
How to get there?
To get there by train: the nearest station is LEZIGNAN-CORBIERES (Lezignan-Aude), then it is still about 40mn away by car. We will organize shuttles from the station on the 30th of september and on the 1st of October to get there.
By car, look at the map (http://www.cravirola.com/pages/contact.html). Once you are in Minerve, go towards BOISSET and then towards BOIS-BAS, the farm is at about 10km away from the village of Minerve.